You look for good news where you can find it. And for AOL, it’s in a 6% increase in global ad sales in Q2 — and the $1.1B it received from its patent sale to Microsoft. That jolt of cash enabled the Internet company to report Q2 net income of $970.8M vs its $11.8M loss in the period last year, on revenues of $531.1M, -2%. The revenue figure beats the $519.4M that analysts expected. Wall Street forecast earnings per share to come in at 10 cents a share; AOL’s reported figure — $10.17 — includes the Microsoft cash and isn’t comparable. But if you dig into the report, the company says that the unusual items added $9.94 to the EPS. Do a little subtraction, and you get EPS of 23 cents, well above the consensus. Along with the extra funds, AOL says it spent $8.8M on its recent proxy fight, $7.6M to settle a Virginia tax matter, and $5.6M in costs related to the patent sale. While AOL saw strong growth in sales of display ads overseas, in the U.S. display was flat and search and contextual ads were -1%. Subscription revenues fell 13% to $175.3M as the number of people buying AOL’s domestic Internet access service declined 3% vs the end of Q1 to 3.0M. CEO Tim Armstrong says the latest report is a “significant milestone” because it’s the first time in four years that the company showed growth in adjusted OIBDA — a measure of cash flow. “The strong results and consumer performance we announced today are clear signs our strategic and operating efforts are translating into significant financial progress.”
AOL Slows Revenue Decline In Q2 As Ad Sales Grow
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